Status: Active. First Launch: 1999-06-24. Last Launch: 2003-01-13. Number: 4 . Thrust: 2,500.00 kN (562,000 lbf). Gross mass: 151,700 kg (334,400 lb). Height: 38.90 m (127.60 ft). Diameter: 2.44 m (8.00 ft). Apogee: 1,000 km (600 mi).
The Delta 3-m payload fairing was successfully jettisoned and the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer was placed in a 754 km x 769 km x 25.0 degree initial orbit. After separation the Delta second stage then a depletion burn and was left in a 182 x 915 km x 19.1 degree orbit from which it would quickly decay out of orbit. Checkout of FUSE in orbit was proceeding well as of July 1.
First use of a Delta dual payload attach fitting. The Earth Orbiter 1 satellite was part of NASA's New Millenium Program. Complementing the New Millenium's Deep Space series, EO-1 was a NASA-Goddard satellite which demonstrated technology for the next generation Landsat. It flew in formation with Landsat-7 for comparison purposes, using a hydrazine thruster to adjust its orbit. The satellite used a MIDEX-derived bus built by Swales Aerospace; dry mass was 566 kg. The main instruments were ALI (Advanced Land Imager) and the Hyperion 220-band imaging spectrometer. At 1835 GMT the Delta second stage completed its first burn and entered a 185 x 713 km x 98.2 deg transfer orbit. At 1920 GMT the orbit was circularised and EO-1 separated at 1925 GMT into a 682 x 729 km x 98.2 deg orbit.
The SAC-C Satelite de Aplicaciones Cientificas C was developed by the Argentine space agency CONAE and built by the Argentine company INVAP. The 467 kg satellite carried a battery of earth observing instruments for Argentine forestry and agriculture studies. SAC-C also carried a NASA experiment which used the distortion of GPS signals observed near the horizon to derive atmospheric conditions. The DPAF dual payload support structure, derived from Ariane's SPELDA, was ejected after deployment of the EO-1 satellite from the Delta stage to reveal SAC-C. After a further Delta burn SAC-C was ejected at 1955 GMT into a 687 x 707 km x 98.3 deg orbit.
The small 6 kg Munin nanosatellite was built by Swedish students in collaboration with the Swedish Insitute for Space Physics (IRF) and carried a particle detector, a spectrometer, and an auroral camera. After deployment of EO-1 and SAC-C a fourth burn put the Delta second stage in a 697 x 1800 km x 95.4 deg orbit, after which Munin was ejected from the stage.
The QuickBird commercial imaging satellite was owned by DigitalGlobe (formerly EarthWatch) and used a Ball BCP2000 bus with a launch mass of 1028 kg and a dry mass of about 995 kg. The Delta upper stage entered a 185 x 472 km x 98.1 deg orbit at 1902 GMT. At 1948 GMT it reached apogee and fired again to deploy QuickBird into a 461 x 465 km x 97.2 deg orbit. The Delta then made a series of unusual depletion burns, lowering its perigee to 167 km and changing inclination to 108.9 deg.
Quickbird 2 was to be operational after a few months of calibration and "ground-truth" checkouts to market high resolution images. The 1.0 tonne satellite was reported to be capable of images with a resolution as small as 0.6 meter, though the standard products were to be coarser. Unlike the comparable quality images from IKONOS images, some of which are currently marketed exclusively to the US military, all Quickbird 2 images may be available in the open market.